Adyashanti: Enlightenment is Not What You Think

“To think that enlightenment only comes through wonderful experiences is to delude yourself. Yes, there are those cases when someone has a spontaneous awakening, and he or she doesn’t have a lot of karmic tendencies to see through. But that is rare. For most of us, the path to enlightenment is not rosy. We need to acknowledge this, because otherwise we’re only going to let ourselves travel toward that which feels good, that which supports our image of what the path of awakening should be. For most people, the path of awakening does have wonderful, profound moments and realizations. But it is also a gritty thing. Its not what most people sign up for when they say they want to be enlightened.

The truth of the matter is that most people who say they want awakening don’t actually want to awaken. They want their version of awakening. What they actually want it to be really happy in their dream state. And that’s okay, if that’s as far as they’ve evolved…..But the real, sincere impulse toward enlightenment is something that goes far beyond the desire to make our dream state better. It is an impulse that is willing to subject itself to whatever is needed in order to wake up. The authentic impulse toward enlightenment is that internal prayer asking for whatever it is that will bring us to a full awakening, regardless of whether it turns out to be wonderful or terrible.” -Adyashanti From his book The End of Your World

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